Marijuana Business Magazine November-December 2019

Partnership PIONEERS Dowling said one thing that helped expedite the process and gain retailers’ trust was CV Sciences’ long-term investment in toxicology studies to demonstrate product quality and show that con- sumers are getting what they want. “We started that process about three years ago, and so we knew what was coming and what would be required when the FDA got involved and when big retailers got involved,” Dowling said. “If you wanted to be taken seriously, that would be one of the basic things that you would have to demonstrate.” The overall vetting process is similar from one retailer to the next, though most typically have unique packaging requirements, Dowling said. “They’ll want a different in-line shelf merchandising or specific packaging or a certain kind of marketing materials,” he added. KEEPING IT GOING Distribution logistics and the company’s ability to consistently and reliably fulfill orders is another area of concern for retailers. CV Sciences’ existing presence in the marketplace already demonstrated its distribution success and ability to scale, but there were still points to work on with its new partners, Dowling said. “We had to work with them to get them comfortable that we had sufficient scale throughout the supply chain to be able to deliver on the merchandise that they knew they would be ordering,” he said. “And not just on the initial order but on subsequent orders, and not just on the initial launch for the number of stores that they intended to launch in but planned increases for locations down the road as well.” NEXT STEPS CV Sciences had also been working to scale up its capacity. In August, the company announced it signed a lease for a new 45,000-square-foot facility in San Diego for CBD oil production, warehouse and fulfillment. Additionally, CV Sciences exe- cuted supply agreements for the 2019 season with hemp farmers in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky and Wisconsin to provide domestic hemp and ensure the company has the incremental supply needed to support future growth. “We’re constantly evaluating our capacity based on what we think future demand will be, including for Kroger and other mass-merchandise retailers,” Dowling said. CV Sciences and CVS Pharmacy CV Sciences and Kroger CASE STUDY Laura Drotleff writes about hemp for Hemp Industry Daily and Marijuana Business Magazine. She can be reached at [email protected] . Kroger is the largest grocery chain in the United States. Photo by Dwight Burdette CVS has nearly 10,000 stores nationwide. Courtesy Photo Marijuana Business Magazine | November-December 2019 76